By Francisco Salazar
With an unbeaten record, one would think Antonio Orozco walks around with a chip on his shoulder.
And why not? He is one of Golden Boy Promotions hot prospects, has a fan-friendly style, and has a clean-cut image.
He has gone through 20 opponents as a pro, with little difficulty. Whether it is by decision or spectacular knockout, Antonio Orozco is one to keep an eye on.
While that may be the case, Orozco does not get caught up in what he does. In fact, while some in his situation may skip training sessions or slack on morning runs, Orozco keeps grinding.
He does not want to get beat, not by an opponent he faces in the ring, but by himself.
Orozco will fight Steve Forbes in an eight round bout tonight at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif. The bout will be part of a Golden Boy Promotions card and will be broadcast live as part of a "Golden Boy Live" telecast, beginning at 10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT.
Orozco has made quite a name for himself as a fighter in the last 18 months. Some of those bouts have appeared on television, where he has gained more fight fans for his aggressive style.
In his last bout, Orozco scored a one-sided 10 round unanimous decision over Martin Honorio on May 15 in Del Mar, Calif., not too far away from his hometown of San Diego.
He will face another veteran fighter with a tremendous amount of experience in Forbes. The former world title holder has beaten or faced some of the best fighters in boxing throughout an almost-18 year period.
While Forbes has lost his last five fights in a row, Orozco is not taking him lightly at all.
"I'm definitely excited (for tonight), but I'm cautious," Orozco told Boxingscene.com over the phone earlier this week. "Steve Forbes is still a dangerous fighter. I'm not going into the fight too confident."
While Orozco (20-0, 15 KOs) is known for his power in each hand that can change the momentum in the fight or that have out his opponents on the canvas, he wants to utilize his boxing skills more.
Fight fans love spectacular knockouts and slugfests. Orozco is a young and strong fighter, who has that Mexican style of coming forward and forcing a fight.
It has worked thus far for Orozco, but he as a family to think about and while aggressive and strength work, he also to think long term as well.
"I know I have an exciting style that is interesting to watch," said Orozco, who is managed by Frank Espinoza. "I've progressed well as a fighter, but I have to think of my wife and kids. There's times where I train to not be so aggressive and to box more."
"I'm all for giving the fans a good show, but what if there is an opponent who is aggressive like I am or more? Than that is when I have to box more. I need to take advantage of all those opportunities. Box when I have to box and be aggressive when I need to be aggressive."
Orozco calls San Diego home. While he could do what hundreds of fighters do and go to train at the gyms in the Los Angeles area or in Oxnard, Orozco stays at home.
He is loyal to the area, not only because he lives there.
He would want nothing more than to continue making his mark in the sport, but to also put San Diego on the boxing map.
"San Diego has produced many great fighters. Terry Norris and others. San Diego is right between Los Angeles and Tijuana and there are great fighters in those cities. It's great to be part of the boxing culture here in San Diego. I just want to make a name for myself."
Orozco looks like he is making all the right moves to make it big in boxing. While he has had a solid 2014 campaign, the icing on the cake would be to beat a formidable and experienced opponent in Forbes.
He has not taken anything for granted and is eager to see what 2015 holds.
"I've happy with my progress as a fighter. I hope to continue doing that in 2015. I'd like to move up the ladder and get the experience I need to be successful."
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene.com since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Salazar also covers boxing for the Ventura County (CA) Star newspaper, RingTV, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing